Charles Nègre, Model reclining, (around 1849-1850). Photographs sale at Phillips, London, 1 November. Estimate £100,000-£150,000.
Hailing from the personal collection of the British dealers James and Claire Hyman, this 19th-century salt print was likely a study for Charles Nègre’s painting La Lecture. James Hyman says there is “rarity in these early French salt prints, with many of these works being unique or irreplaceable”. Indeed, the negative of the work has been lost, but five similar negatives of the same model in the artist’s studio are known, one of which is in the Nègre family collection. The print was last offered by Sotheby’s Paris in 2002 where it fetched £90,000, well above its high estimate of £18,000.